Okay, Marius, but I hope the safety is on.
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Brain Hacker – by Bill
“Yes! I’m in!” The lines of code seemed to appear on the screen magically. Seventeen year old Teddy Sanders’ fingers were flying across the keyboard. Teddy, a tall lanky kid with a thick mop of brown hair, sat crosswise on the overstuffed chair in his best friend’s basement.
“Cool.” said Eriq, glancing from his own laptop over toward Teddy’s. “Did you use SQL injection?”
“Sweet! You’re the man Teddy!”
“I know. And, I didn’t even need all this extra brain power. These dweebs make it way too easy.
The bright sun shone through the basement window highlighting the dust that filled the air of the 70’s style paneled basement. Teddy and Eriq hung out here almost every day after school. They had met in the sixth grade at Sherwood Academy, an elite prep school for “gifted” children. Eriq was a charity case, at least that’s what the jerks at school called him. The school needed to fill their quota of poor kids, so Eriq got a scholarship. But, that’s why Teddy liked him. He hated that his parents, well his mom, had money. Besides, Eriq was smarter than most of those snobs, even without a stim.
“Hey Eriq, check out the new homepage I just created for them.” Teddy spun the screen of his laptop toward Eriq. The display showed a pic of a zombie lumbering forward, the flap of skin that hung from his head only slightly blocking the corporate logo of the Ingenio Corporation.
Eriq and Teddy both laughed out loud. Eriq popped up off of the couch and slapped Teddy’s hand. “Man they are gonna freak.”
Teddy flipped the screen back around. “Okay, here we go, RS Project Files, that’s just what I was looking for. Let’s have some fun.”
The piano’s hammers rocked up and down as rapidly as the pistons of a large muscle car. The notes reverberated from the piano’s soundboard filling the large concert hall. The tiny fingers of 6 year old Emily Bright danced across the black and ivory colored keys. Mr. And Mrs. Bright sat in the front row beaming with pride as their young daughter masterfully keyed Scarbo, the third movement of Ravel’s Gaspard de la Nuit. There were more than 2500 people in Boston’s Symphony Hall, but the only sound that could be heard came from the single Steinway grand piano in the center of the stage. As the diminutive virtuoso completed the last note, every man, woman, and child in the audience rose to their feet and burst into raucous applause.
“One of the most difficult pieces of piano music ever written, and she has literally made it child’s play. There are only a handful of people in the world that can play that piece.” Brett Primly, a slick well-dressed account rep for Ingenio Corp. handed Tajinder and the very pregnant Shobha Kapur his company’s brochure. “She’s one of ours.”
The Ingenio Corp. headquarters, a 100-story glass-covered postmodern building topped with an octagonal dome reminiscent of the temple at Pali, is located at 271 Dartmouth Street, a prime piece of real estate, in one of Boston’s most expensive neighborhoods. At a height of more than 1200 feet, the Ingenio Tower dwarfed the rest of the city’s buildings as it loomed over the city.
As Mr. and Mrs. Kapur entered Ingenio’s cavernous lobby they were greeted by a very attractive well-dressed tall and slender young woman. “Hello Mr. and Mrs. Kapur, I am Jill Danskill, I will be showing you around today. Would you like some champagne or maybe coffee or tea?”
“No, no thank you” Tajinder replied. “We are anxious to get started.” After a quick stop at the security desk to pick up guest ID badges, the three made their way over to the bank of elevators, Jill swiped her ID card across the elevator’s card reader, and they boarded the express elevator to the 92nd floor.
The elevator opened to an expansive panoramic view of Boston’s Charles River and Cambridge’s MIT. The 92nd floor wrapped around the building where the dome began and provided stunning views of the city. Jill gestured toward the domed structure on the Charles that defined the MIT campus. “That’s the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mr. Patel’s alma mater. He insisted that this building had to overlook MIT. He IS our founder after all.”
Jill ushered the Kapurs into the viewing room where they were seated on a large plush sofa facing an enormous LED flat screen that covered the entirety of the 20 foot wall in front of them. As the huge screen lit the room, the lights dimmed and the speakers boomed as God had to Moses on Mount Sinai. “Welcome to Ingenio. We all want the best for our children. We will do whatever we can to provide them with every opportunity and every advantage. We know that as smart or as talented as they are, there are hundreds of children who are smarter or more talented.”
On the screen a group of children wearing gray uniforms marched compliantly toward a factory building. A classroom full of children all held up their hands as the camera panned out to show hundreds of children all competing to answer the same question.
“What if you could guarantee your child’s success? What if your child were given the ultimate advantage?”
A child on the screen effortlessly played a violin solo. Another, barely out of diapers, was playing speed chess, and a third young girl wearing a white doctor’s coat was attending to the medical needs of an elderly patient.
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